Father-Son Challenge returns after 4-year absence

By Associated PressDecember 14, 2012, 11:33 pm

ORLANDO, Fla. – When Larry Nelson won the last Father-Son Challenge with son Drew, the runner-up duo included a high school freshman just beginning to grow into his body and his swing.

Look at Dru Love now.

The son of Davis Love III stands 6-foot-3, a five-time Georgia state champion now trying to crack the lineup of a No. 1 Alabama team that includes a U.S. Amateur semifinalist and two second-team All-Americans.

And if you think he's big, check out Arnold Palmer's partner this week. Grandson Will Wears is a 6-foot-5 high school senior who plays basketball during Pennsylvania's winter season.

''Yeah, it's been a while,'' Nelson said Friday.

After a three-year absence, the scramble event returns this weekend at Grande Lakes Orlando's Ritz-Carlton Golf Club.

''When your son's with you, you'd better be competitive,'' said Jack Nicklaus, joined by son Gary this week. ''And your son had better be competitive. Both of you want to show each other that you can play.''

The event had a 14-year run from 1995-2008 before sponsorship issues dropped it from the schedule. It was such a hit among its Hall of Fame participants, though, that organizers never set the concept aside.

With Palmer's help, the event was revived in March with PNC Bank as sponsor.

''It's exciting to think that they want to play as badly as they do,'' Palmer said when the return was formally announced. ''So they bring their sons, their daughters – whatever it might be – and it's pretty exciting.''

The field features 18 major champions or Players Championship winners, paired with their offspring. In the case of guys like Nicklaus, Nelson and Raymond Floyd, they've had to let two sons alternate years.

''It's fun to come and compete on the big stage – or what feels like a big stage to us,'' said Josh Nelson, who helped Team Nelson to the 2007 title but stepped aside a year later as brother Drew helped bring the family another title. ''We relish it. Every year, we were hoping to hear that they would get a sponsor and we're just really thankful for PNC stepping up.''

Dru Love – formally Davis Love IV but with a nickname shortened from the word ''quadruple'' – was 14 at the last Father-Son. As exciting as it was to challenge the Nelsons down the stretch, the company he was keeping was no less memorable.

''Getting out with your dad and playing a scramble is no big deal,'' he said. ''But when you jump out there with – last (time) we had Shark (Greg Norman) and Vijay (Singh) – that was really cool.''

Lee Trevino and Daniel Trevino also are playing along with Nick Faldo and Matthew Faldo, Hale Irwin and Steve Irwin, Vijay Singh and Qass Singh, Steve Elkington and Sam Elkington, Raymond Floyd and Robert Floyd, Lee Janzen and Connor Janzen, Bernhard Langer and Christina Langer, Sandy Lyle and James Lyle, Mark O'Meara and Shaun O'Meara, David Duval and Nick Karavites, Dave Stockton and David Stockton, Lanny Wadkins and Tucker Wadkins, and Fuzzy Zoeller and Gretchen Zoeller.

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Watch: Reed races in 40-footer to put away Spieth

By Golf Channel DigitalMarch 23, 2018, 10:19 pm

Three up with three holes to play at the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play, Patrick Reed missed an opportunity to close out his match with Jordan Spieth when Spieth won the 16th hole with a birdie.

But Reed wouldn't let the match move to 18. Putting for birdie from the apron, 40 feet from the hole, at the par-3 17th, Reed raced in this putt to end the match.

With the win, Reed moved to 3-0-0 for the week and advanced to the weekend at Austin Country Club.

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Garcia's win-win situation: Move on or baby time

By Rex HoggardMarch 23, 2018, 9:45 pm

AUSTIN, Texas – Given his status as one of Europe’s preeminent Ryder Cup players, Sergio Garcia’s record at the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play is nothing short of inexplicable.

In 15 starts at the event, the Spaniard has played the weekend just once – in 2010 when he lost in the semifinals to Ian Poulter – and since the event pivoted to round-robin play he’s never made it out of the group stages.

His fortunes have changed dramatically this year, with Garcia going undefeated in pool play and cruising to the Sweet 16 following a 3-and-1 victory over Xander Schauffele on Friday.

“I would love to have done a little better than I have,” said Garcia, who will play Kyle Stanley in the Round of 16 early Saturday. “I have had some good weeks here. But not probably as good as I should have. So hopefully this week it will be better.”

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Garcia made no secret of the source of his turnaround following the birth of his first child last Wednesday, a girl named Azalea. Even on Friday when he found himself 2 down through 11 holes and in danger of not advancing he kept an upbeat attitude.

“The way I looked at it, when I was 2 down, we're going to try to turn it around, but if we don't, it means that I get to spend more time with [his wife] Angela and Azalea for the weekend,” Garcia said. “I tried to look at it in a good way.”

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DeLaet: WGC's robin-robin format 'sucks'

By Grill Room TeamMarch 23, 2018, 9:20 pm

Graham DeLaet isn't teeing it up at Austin Country Club this week because he didn't qualify for the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play, but that doesn't mean he lacks an opinion on the event's format.

DeLaet hopped on social media Friday during Day 3 of the WGC-Match Play to torch the round-robin format that's been in place for three years, saying he much preferred the single elimination that was in place when he played in 2014.

"Played Match Play in Tucson in 2014. Early group on Wednesday, lost. Threw clubs in my car and was on my couch in Scottsdale by 2:00 pm. Collect 30K and spend the weekend at home, he tweeted. "That’s a good format. This one sucks."

DeLeat's comments may be the strongest to date, but he's not alone in his opposition to pool play. Several players lamented Friday's "meaningless" matches earlier this week, and Henrik Stenson cited the lack of a do-or-die atmosphere as his reason for skipping the event.

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Watch: Kuchar makes ace at WGC-Dell Match Play

By Golf Channel DigitalMarch 23, 2018, 9:09 pm

In his bid to advance to the weekend at the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play, Matt Kuchar aced the par-3 seventh hole Friday at Austin Country Club.

With an 8-iron from 181 yards, Kuchar landed his ball short of the flag and watched it roll and roll ... and drop.

The hole-in-one moved Kuchar 3 Up in match against Ross Fisher. 

The last hole-in-one at the Match Play came in Sunday's consolation match last year, when Hideto Tanihara aced the same hole before later losing to Bill Haas.